May 25, 2011 / 10:39 AM / 8 years ago

Barbican brings Binoche, Blanchett to big stage

LONDON (Reuters Life!) - London’s Barbican Center will bring Oscar winning actresses Juliette Binoche and Cate Blanchett to the big stage in 2012 in a bumper crop of performers to coincide with the summer Olympics.

Presenter Cate Blanchett arrives at the 83rd Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, February 27, 2011. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

French star Binoche, who won an Academy Award for “The English Patient,” will appear in “Mademoiselle Julie” in September 2012, the theater and music venue announced on Wednesday.

Australian Blanchett, who picked up her statuette for “The Aviator,” stars as Lotte in “Gross Und Klein” by German playwright Botho Strauss in April.

“Like (Lewis) Carroll’s Alice, sometimes Lotte is too big for her surroundings and sometimes too small to be noticed within them,” said the Barbican’s description of what it called a “delicately surreal play.”

There will be a UK premiere for Robert Wilson and Philip Glass’s rarely performed “Einstein on the Beach, An Opera in Four Acts,” Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra will be in residence, featuring British conductor Simon Rattle.

There will be the biggest British exhibition in 40 years dedicated to modern art movement Bauhaus which will include works from Walter Gropius, Paul Klee and Mies van der Rohe.

And in “Desdemona,” Malian singer/songwriter Rokia Traore and U.S. Nobel Literature Prize laureate Toni Morrison join forces to create a work inspired by an “invisible” character from one of Shakespeare’s plays.

In the work, they imagine a conversation between Shakespeare’s Desdemona and her African nurse Barbary from beyond the grave.

“In 2012 stars of stage and screen will rub shoulders with first-timers, international artists will meet local young people and the traditional will meet the new,” said Louise Jeffreys, director of programing at the Barbican.

“The Barbican offers the world in an arts center right at the heart of what London will offer the world in 2012.”

Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato

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